How Do I Issue a Web Server Certificate?


Heather Bennett

Are you looking to issue a web server certificate? Look no further!

In this comprehensive guide, we will walk you through the step-by-step process of issuing a web server certificate. Let’s get started!

What is a Web Server Certificate?

A web server certificate, also known as an SSL/TLS certificate, is a digital certificate that authenticates the identity of a website and enables secure communication between the website and its users. It ensures that the data transmitted between the web server and the user’s browser remains encrypted and protected from unauthorized access.

Step 1: Generate a Certificate Signing Request (CSR)

The first step in issuing a web server certificate is to generate a Certificate Signing Request (CSR). The CSR contains information about your organization and the domain for which you want to obtain the certificate.

  • Generate CSR using OpenSSL: Open your terminal or command prompt and run the following command:
    • Type: openssl req -new -newkey rsa:2048 -nodes -keyout yourdomain.key -out yourdomain.csr
    • Replace “yourdomain” with your actual domain name.
  • Fill in the required information: You will be prompted to enter information such as common name (your domain name), organization name, country, etc. Fill in these details accurately.
  • Save the generated files: After completing the above steps, you will have two files: yourdomain.key (private key) and yourdomain.csr (certificate signing request).


Make sure to keep your private key secure as it is used for encrypting and decrypting the data transmitted between the web server and the user’s browser.

Step 2: Submit the CSR to a Certificate Authority (CA)

Once you have generated the CSR, you need to submit it to a trusted Certificate Authority (CA) for validation and issuance of the web server certificate.

  • Choose a trusted CA: There are many CAs available in the market. Choose a reputable CA that meets your requirements.
  • Submit CSR: Follow the instructions provided by your chosen CA to submit your CSR.

    This process may involve creating an account, providing additional information, and verifying domain ownership.

  • Verify domain ownership: The CA may require you to prove that you own the domain for which you are requesting the certificate. This can be done by adding a specific DNS record or by uploading a file to your website’s root directory.
  • Wait for validation: The CA will validate your request and issue the web server certificate once verification is complete. This process may take anywhere from a few minutes to several days, depending on the CA’s policies.

Step 3: Install the Web Server Certificate

After receiving the web server certificate from the CA, you need to install it on your web server. The installation process may vary depending on your server software.

  • Select your server software: Choose your server software from popular options like Apache, Nginx, IIS, etc. Each server software has its own instructions for installing SSL/TLS certificates.
  • Follow installation instructions: Refer to your server software’s documentation or the CA’s instructions to install the web server certificate correctly.
  • Test the installation: Once the certificate is installed, test it by accessing your website over HTTPS. Ensure that there are no errors or warnings in the browser.


Congratulations! You have successfully issued a web server certificate.

By following this guide, you have taken an important step towards securing your website and protecting your users’ data. Remember to renew your certificate before it expires to maintain uninterrupted security.

Issuing a web server certificate may seem complex at first, but with proper guidance and understanding of the process, it becomes much easier. Now that you know how to issue a web server certificate, go ahead and secure your website today!

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